TONGA IS IN A DEMOCRATIC MESS

Posted: 09-Nov-2020 03:27 PM

Editorials

There is a sense of confusion about our political situation and it is fuming a bad taste over the country at the moment. Perhaps we have been thrown into disarray by the current government’s tricks and deceit in order to secure a re-election, or we have been shocked by the opposition’s internal crisis of confidence. Either way both are at fault. 


At first the current government’s priority programs servicing their individual constituencies rather than the whole of Tonga has caused an uproar amongst the general public and a critical re-thinking of the meaning our taxation system. The Prime Minister made it clear that his government will prioritise its works with those who share similar interests and beliefs with that of their political agenda. Those of whom do not share these interests and beliefs would most likely be at the end of the priority list or not at all. 


In addition, parliamentary life has now seen its decline whereby reasonable debate has been overtaken by personal agendas and policy has been overwhelmed by silly childish hatred between the government and the opposition. Within the current parliamentary session there has been no meaningful laws and policy direction to guide our path to the future. All we see are short term objectives and the way forward seems blurry. 


The government and the opposition are both busy gambling for votes, playing imagery politics to showcase who would look better to the people. The government is trying its best to discredit all the works of the former government and to discredit the priorities of the opposition side, therefore leads the house on to another episode of boxing with endless fighting where none of them would win unless the other throws in the towel. But really, there is no national purpose at all.
The entire notion of representative democracy is for the diversity of people, ideas, opinions, and interests to come together and draws from it the best possible form of policies, legislations, and economic strategies in the interest of the nation as a whole. Yet, the democratic idea dissolves when the government turned into a circus for their own audience to enjoy and the parliament heavily reduced from politics into a pageant contest. 


On the other hand, the opposition who is now the Democratic Party of the Friendly Islands have found themselves standing at the crossroads. Once a champion of democratic reform they now become fallen victims to individualism. Just like the government they are trying to please the ignorance of their supporters rather than meaningful direction for our national discourse. Those who promoted democracy are those themselves undermining its legacy and ideals. Spinoza would often view that the prophets were all the better placed to predict disasters because they were themselves responsible for them. Thus, the Party of the Friendly Islands and its supporters are also the agitators of this democratic mess. 


Since, the party lost its former leader accompanied by the loss of government to its own members who left the party, they have been struggling to find internal leadership, stability and order. Some of them rather than providing solutions are creating more confusion, not only to the public but to its followers as well. But the most of them are pointing at each other for the party’s flaws rather than realizing the fact that they are lost. They must understand that the first step to solving any problem is recognising that there is one. 


A crisis of confidence was popularly coined by then United States President Jimmy Carter in 1979 “We can see this crisis in the growing doubt about the meaning of our own lives and in the loss of a unity of purpose for our nation”. Perhaps, the Democratic Party of the Friendly Islands must first admit to their failure to lead people and achieve unity and fix it in order to re-emerge as the dominant political force they once were. That has to happen sooner rather than later; or there will be little hope that they will take back government in the next general election.


This is a democratic mess and so, if the democratic processes do not function as it was intended to do; it is usual that those societies often resolve into a parliamentary regime or revert back to a monarchy. So it is important to ask this question? What is our desired purpose for our nation?

‘ASI ‘AE MOVEUVEU FAKA-TEMOKALATI ‘I TONGA

‘Oku ‘i ai ha’a tau ongo’i moveuveu ‘i he tu’unga fakapolitikale pea ko hono ‘alaha ‘oku ongo ta’efakafiemalie ‘i he tu’unga lolotonga ‘a e fonua. Mahalo nai na’a kuo tau to ‘o movetevete ‘i he ngaahi fakatauhele mo e loi ‘a e Pule’anga lolotonga ko e ‘uhi ko ‘enau taumu’a ke nau toe ma’u ‘a e fili hoko, pe kuo ofongi kitautolu ‘e he ngaahi toonounou ‘a e tu’unga falala’anga ‘o e fa’ahi fakaanga. Ka ko e ha pe hono ‘uhinga, ‘oku na kaunga loua pe ki ai.


Ko e ‘uluaki ‘i he tu’unga ‘o e pule’anga lolotonga ke nau fakahoko fatongia pe ki he ‘enau ngaahi vahenga fili fakafo’ituitui kae ‘ikai ke fai ma’a Tonga hono kotoa ‘oku ne fakatupu ha loto tangia he kakai tokolahi pea ‘oku ne fehu’ia lahi ‘etau founga tanaki tukuhau. Na’e fakaha foki ‘e he Palemia ‘o mahino te nau fakamu’omu’a ‘a e ngaahi ngaue mo kinautolu ‘oku nau tui tatau mo ‘enau ‘asenita. Ko kinautolu leva ‘oku ‘ikai ke nau tui tatau, mahalo na’a nau toki kau atu he fakamuimui taha pe ‘ikai.
‘Oku to e kanoni ‘aki foki ‘a e tu’unga hange kuo mole ‘a e mahu’inga ia ‘o e Fale Alea pea ‘ikai to e mahu’inga malie ha ngaahi tipeiti, kae hanga atu leva ia ki he ngaahi ‘asenita fakafo’ituitui. ‘Oku puli leva ‘a e tefito ‘o e ngaahi tu’utu’uni ngaue ia kae hanga atu ia ki he tau’aki taufehi’a hange ha ‘ulungaanga fakakauleka. Ko e iku’anga leva ia ‘o e Fale Alea lolotonga ‘oku ‘ikai ke ha mei ai ha ngaahi lao pe tu’tu’uni ngaue ‘e mahu’inga malie ki he halafononga ‘o e kaha’u hotau fonua. Ko e me’a pe ‘oku tau sio ki ai ko e ngaahi ngaue taimi nounou hange ha taumu’a pe ki he fili hoko kae tu’u ngali nenefu leva ‘a e kaha’u ia.


Ko e Pule’anga fakataha mo e fa’ahi fakaanga kuo na femo’uekina kinaua he tauhele’i e ngaahi fo’i fili ‘a e kakai, hange ha tau’aki fakahaha pe ko hai ‘oku fotu matamata lelei taha ki he kakai. Kuo feinga lahi ‘a e pule’anga ia ke ne fakata’e’aonga’i ‘a e ngaahi ngaue ‘a e pule’anga kuo ‘osi, pea ke veuki ‘a e ngaahi taumu’a ngaue ‘a e fa’ahi fakaanga. Kuo hoko leva ‘a e Fale Alea ko ha mala’e fuhu pea te na tau tuki ai ‘o ‘ikai ha taha ia ‘e malohi kae ‘oua kuo li tauveli ha taha. Ka ko hono mo’oni ‘oku ‘ikai ha taumu’a fakalukufua ia ‘e taha ‘e ma’u mei ai.


Ko e taha ‘o e ngaahi tefito’i ‘uhinga ko ia ‘o e temokalati ke ne ohi mai ‘a e kakai kehekehe, ngaahi fakakaukau kehekehe, pea mo e ngaahi fiema’u kehekehe ke nau faa’utaha ‘o fatu mei ai ‘a e ngaahi taumu’a ngaue, ngaahi lao, mo e ngaahi palani faka’ekonomika ‘a e fonua ma’ae lelei fakalukufua ‘a e fonua. Ka kuo ngali molia ‘a e temokalati ia ‘i he koniseti ‘a e pule’anga ke tu’ulafale mai ki ai ‘enau kau poupou, pea iku ke holoa ‘a e politiki mei he Fale Alea kae hoko ia ko ha fe’auhi fili misi pe ko hai ‘oku ‘asi faka’ofo’ofa taha.


 Ka ‘i he tafa’aki foki ‘e taha kapau te tau vakai atu kihe fa’ahi fakaanga ‘a ia ‘oku ‘i ai ‘ae Paati Temokalati ‘ae ‘Otu motu Anga’ofa (PTOA) kuo hange mai ia ‘oku nau tu’u ha kauhala ‘oku fihi ai ‘a e ngaahi halanga. Na’e taku foki ‘oku nau polepole ‘i he temokalati ka kuo nau pihia atu mo kinautolu ia ‘i he ‘enau ngaahi taumu’a fakafo’ituitui. Hange tofu pe ko e pule’anga lolotonga ‘enau fie tonu holo ki he ‘enau kau muimui mo ‘enau kau poupou kae ‘ikai ha taumu’a fakalukufua ia ma’ae fonua. Ko kinautolu pe ‘eni ne taukave’i ‘a e temokalati ‘oku nau toe fakafe’atungia’i ‘ae ngaahi taumu’a ‘o e temokalati. ‘I he ngaahi fakakaukau ‘a Spinoza na’a ne pehe ko e taimi ‘e ni’ihi ‘oku fa’a faingamalie ma’u pe ha kau palofita ke nau fakatokanga ha fakatamaki ‘e hoko, koe ‘uhi he ko kinautolu pe ia na’a nau fakatupunga. Pea ko e moveuveu fakatemokalati ko ‘eni ‘oku toe kaunga pe ‘ae PTOA ki ai.


Ne talu mei he ‘aho ne malolo ai ‘a e taki ‘o e PTOA pea to e mole mo e pule’anga kiate kinautolu pe na’e ‘i he PTOA pea nau mavahe mei ai, kuo fefusiaki fakalotofale pe ‘a e paati ke tataki mo e pukepuke ‘a e ma’uma’uluta ‘iate kianutolu pe. ‘I ai ‘a e ni’ihi he paati ‘oku ‘ikai te nau ‘omi ha ngaahi solova’anga ki he palopalema ka nau to e tanaki nautolu ki he palopalema. Pea nofo ‘a e tokolahi ‘i he paati ‘o fetukuaki holo pe ko e fo’ui ‘o hai ‘oku nau moveuveu ai, kae ‘ikai te nau ma’u ha loto fie’auna ke sio hifo ‘o ‘ilo ‘oku nau lolotonga hee. ‘Oku totonu ke nau mahino’i ko e fuofua ngaue ki hono solova ‘o ha palopalema ko hono ‘ilo ko ia ‘oku ‘i ai ‘enau palopalema. 
Ko e toonounou ‘i he tu’unga falala’anga ko e lea ia ne fuofua fofoa’i he taimi ne Palesiteni ai ‘a Jimmy Carter ‘i ‘Amelika ‘i he ta’u 1979 “’Oku tau mamata ki ha moveuveu ‘oku tupunga ai ‘etau to e fehu’ia ‘a e taumu’a ‘etau ngaahi mo’ui takitaha pea mole leva ai ‘etau tu’u fakataha ki ha taumu’a fakalukufua ‘a e fonua”.  Na’a kuo taau nai kihe PTOA ke nau fakaha mai ki he kakai ‘enau toonounou pea solova ia he vave taha. He kapau ‘e ‘ikai ke hoko ‘eni pea ‘e si’i ha tui te nau to e ikuna fakafoki ‘a e pule’anga ‘i he fili ka hoko.


Ko e moveuveu fakatemokalati ko ‘eni ‘oku hoko kuo pau ke tau fakafoki ‘a e temokalati ki he taumu’a totonu na’e fakahoko ‘aki, ko e iku’anga ‘o e ngaahi sosaieti ‘oku ‘ikai te nau malava fakahoko ‘a e temokalati ko ‘enau kumi ha pule’anga faka-Fale Alea pe ko ‘enau to e foki ki he pule’anga faka-Tu’i. Ko ia ‘oku mahu’inga ai ke tau ‘eke ‘a e fehu’i, ko e ha ‘etau taumu’a fakalukufua ma’a hotau ki’i fonua?
 

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